State Congress general secretary Kuldeep Rathore has urged UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi to grant liberal financial assistance to the state for relief and restoration works in its Kinnaur district.

He also urged Gandhi to take appropriate step to formulate an effective policy to protect the ecologically fragile Himalayan region.

In a letter to the Sonia Gandhi, Rathore said that it was a high time that political leaders rose above party lines and came out with an effective strategy to preserve the Himalayan environment and in turn the lives and livelihoods of the local people.

Congress leader also called for a review of the existing policy of setting up cascading hydropower projects in Himalayan region, so that higher hills were left undisturbed and rivers were not dried up completely. It’s noted that over 1,100 hydropower projects were coming up in Himachal and Uttarakhand alone.

He pressed to allow only environmentally sustainable projects and those which caused minimum deforestation and dislocation of people. He said that tragedy like Uttarakhand and Kinnaur district of Himachal should not be repeated and administration should take appropriate step to stop it in the near future.